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Browns coach Shurmur battles on despite criticism

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BEREA, Ohio (AP) - Cleveland Browns coach Pat Shurmur would prefer running back Trent Richardson focus on regrouping rather than being critical after a tough loss.

Shurmur said Monday he spoke with Richardson after the rookie knocked his decisions following a 38-21 loss to the Washington Redskins. The embattled second-year coach insisted he is not angry with Richardson.

Shurmur has directed a young team through a rollercoaster season under the specter of new ownership. Jimmy Haslam III, who bought the team over the summer, may make changes to the staff in the offseason. Through it all, though, Shurmur's Browns have persevered. Cleveland (5-9) had won three in a row before Sunday's loss. The Browns close with Denver (11-3) and Pittsburgh (7-7).

Shurmur, in his Monday press conference, also backed quarterback Brandon Weeden, saying the 29-year-old rookie can still develop despite a poor performance vs. the Redskins.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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